An appreciation for a job well done
I have been thinking this morning about the Town of Medfield employees who provide we residents with the services that allow our lives to continue with as much semblance of normalcy as possible at all times, but most especially in these truly unsettling circumstances we are currently experiencing. Our water goes on, public safety continues to serve us, the Transfer Station even added Sunday openings, and all the town government systems continue to function, if behind a digital curtain, all so that we residents can continue our lives.
The town employees are providing essential services, so while they likely share the same unease that envelopes us all, they continue to work their jobs. I wanted to publicly share with the Town of Medfield employees my sincere appreciation for their efforts and to thank them.
I am extremely appreciative of what all the town employees are doing now, working under difficult circumstances – I want to let them all know just how much this one resident, one who tries hard to observe closely the functioning of the town government so as to understand it as well as possible, truly appreciates what our team of town employees are accomplishing for we residents.
Posted in Council on Aging, DPW, Employees, Fire Department, Library, Medfield High School, Medfield Youth Outreach, MPR, People, Permitting, Planning, Police Department, Recycling & Solid Waste, Town Services
Good article by Mike Gleason on Nick in the Medfield Press
It was nice to meet Nick at the Select Board meeting last night.
The Fire Service Commission of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts awarded the following “Massachusetts Firefighter Service Award” to five Medfield Fire Department firefighters for a combined 135 years of service to the Medfield Fire Department –
The special town meeting (STM) is on Monday, October 29 at 7:30 PM at the Medfield High School gym.
The Board of Selectmen will hold a meeting just before the STM, including an executive session to try to work out the terms of employment for Kristine Trierweiler, the new town administrator.
Kristine Trierweiler just emailed that the Selectmen are doing the evaluation of the town administrator at our next meeting, February 7, not this evening. Sorry – my mistake.
The Board of Selectmen are being asked to evaluate the town administrator tonight based on his goals and the goals of the selectmen from 2015, so I thought it might be useful for people to see what those goals were stated to be.
The selectmen prepared its goals first in October 2015, with selectman DeSorgher crafting the final combination for each of our separate inputs into the consensus document below. Then Mike drafted his goals in November 2015, which essentially track the selectmen goals.
The town employees were given the choice between having their rates increase a lower amount and paying increased co-pays versus a higher premium increase. They reportedly voted overwhelmingly for the higher premium increase. At the 5/6/14 meeting of the Board of Selectmen, the selectmen approved a rate increase of 8.8% in the health insurance premiums. With the higher co-pays the rate increase would have been 4.4%
The Board of Selectmen has worked thorough suggested goals penned for the board from each selectman, and selectman Richard DeSorgher kindly edited our three sets of goals into the following composite, which the Board of Selectmen has now agreed will be our formal goals this year. Mike Sullivan will next draft his goals, in response to these mandates to him from the Board of Selectmen.
I. Improved Communications
· Collegial and supportive atmosphere for all volunteer committees and boards and their work recognized. Meet with each board and committee annually to share purposes and goals.
· Supportive and positive atmosphere with the Boards interaction with town hall staff and Superintendent of Schools and all department heads and employees.
· Institute improved government transparency and reporting to town residents on town government matters and information and explore ways to make visits to town hall by residents more user friendly.
· Develop joint cooperation between all town boards and committees including the school department and work to combine technology, energy efficiency and building maintenance under one leadership position that can be shared by all departments.
· Identify areas of regionalization of services with neighboring towns, including meetings and contact with area towns in attempt to solve joint problems
· Improve communications with our state and federal representatives and work with their staffs to help Medfield with grants and other assistance
· Improve the operation and updating of the town’s web site.
II. Provide direction and leadership to the State Hospital Advisory Committee and work in partnership with the Committee and the Commonwealth in the development of the former Medfield State Hospital site.
III. Long-range planning
· five year planning from department heads and committee chairmen, using the Water & Sewer long-range plan and Pavement Management Plan as examples
· updating of town by-laws, especially concerning future development at the former Medfield State Hospital.
· strategy for maintenance and renovations of all town buildings, including support, direction and leadership to the Permanent Building Committee
· planning for developing Medfield into a Green Community including usage of solar power and improved recycling ideas.
IV. Ensure that the town continues to provide a high quality of education to its children and provides a high quality of municipal services to its citizens in the most cost-effective manner possible.
· analysis of overtime use
· create a three-year financial forecast of the town, working especially with the warrant committee and the school committee
· examine opportunities for additional revenue streams
· work with the Economic Development Committee on ways to bring tax relief
explore areas of tax relief for senior citizens who own their own homes
I am being interviewed on Medfield TV on 6/18 by Jack Peterson and Theresa Knapp of Patch, and Jack asked me to bring along topics to discuss, so I updated the list of goals and objectives I prepared for the Board of Selectmen last September:
2013 Goals and Objectives for the Medfield Town Administrator and the Board of Selectmen
By Osler L. Peterson, Selectman
June 3, 2013
1. Institutional good governance systems, such as
a. Thorough planning,
b. Government transparency, and
c. Complete reporting to the residents
2. Have the Board of Advisors (former selectmen) conduct a zero based review of our town government systems to determine whether we are using best practices and have the right systems. Consider partnering with an educational institution to get interns for this task.
a. Establish expectations, policies, and procedures for all town boards and departments.
b. Evaluate staffing levels and positions.
i. Consider hiring a Finance Director.
3. Get written five year plans from the Town Administrator and department heads.
4. Have Town Administrator use annual calendar for the Board of Selectmen.
5. Hold a Board of Selectmen joint meeting annually with each town board and commission to review our shared purposes and goals.
6. Report to town on DPW’s road and sidewalk repair plans and funding.
7. Work with Water and Sewer Commission on its master plan.
8. Study the possible purchase and/or control of the development of the Medfield State Hospital site
9. Oversee the process of dealing with the clean up and reuse of the Medfield State Hospital site.
10. Complete bylaw review, especially for issues related to the Medfield State Hospital site.
11. Work with planning board for new economic growth; Town’s master plan and downtown zoning.
12. Work on strategy for maintenance and renovation of all town buildings and a strategy to build a new DPW Garage, Public Safety, and Community Center.
13. Examine opportunities for additional revenue streams, such as:
a. Housing can be the “business” of Medfield (e.g. – Old Medfield Square)
b. Power purchase agreements for PV power
c. Selling Medfield bottled water
14. Identify opportunities for regionalization of services, such as:
a. Dispatch for public safety
b. Board of Health
15. Target completion of union negotiations before contracts expire.
16. Create a three-year financial forecast of the town, working with the Warrant Committee and the School Committee.
17. Implement succession planning for key municipal positions.
18. Installation of solar PV arrays on town owned land.
19. Become a Green Community.
20. Solve Veterans Service Officer position issues.
21. Perform an analysis of overtime use.
22. Maintain town’s fiscal status.
23. Determine whether our recycling rates can be improved, and our trash costs thereby reduced
Posted in Budgets, Buildings, Charter & Bylaw Review, Development, Employees, Medfield State Hospital, Medfield TV, On being a selectman, Planning, Recycling & Solid Waste, Safety Committee, Town Services, Veterans, Water & Sewer
Exceptional town employee Norma Cronin, Senior Secretarial Administrator to, but really the heart, sole, and glue of both the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals is retiring. The town has opted to try to replace her (we who have worked with her know she cannot be replaced) with a town planner. See here the town planner ad posted in the Massachusetts Municipal Association’s monthly magazine The Bulletin.